Archive for the ‘Story/RP’ Category

Much like I did at the end of Mists, I want to pause for a moment to reflect on what my characters accomplished during Warlords. I leveled 15 16 characters to 100 — all 1112 (counting the Demon Hunter) classes as Horde, plus one Alliance Mage, plus Horde doubles of Death Knight, Shaman, and Monk. Almost as soon as I’d finished leveling them, however, I decided to Retire my Horde doubles.

Although the Garrison wasn’t nearly as customizable as we might have hoped, it still offered some latitude for expressing personal preferences to differentiate amongst my characters. Certain buildings were so useful, though, that the differences mostly came down to building the correct small building for each character’s individual crafting profession and occasional variations in medium and large building choices. For the sake of convenience, I kept their general Garrison layouts very similar.

Although there are no active Lumber Mills in my characters’ final Garrison choices, various characters did have Lumber Mills at one stage or another of their progression through the expansion.

Another important way to differentiate my characters’ Garrisons arrived with the Jukebox in Patch 6.1. When I went AFK for a few minutes, the tune playing in the background reminded me which character I was logged in with when I came back. Depending on how much they’d cared about capital city rep in previous expansions, some characters were also able to choose different guards. And then of course there were the Followers…

Guards: Thunder Bluff
Jukebox: Thunder Bluff, Mulgore Plains
Ideal Garrison Staff: Yepa, Rizei, Tadi, Shappa, Lonan (Tauren Shaman); Geyah, Lokra, Kal’gor, Kaz, Leorajh (zone/quest Shaman); Karg, Na’shra, Mulverick, Ka’la (Frostwolf Orcs); Utona, Unkala, Raitea, Fazerra, Kieu, Reena, Soozee, Moxy (inn recruit female Shaman)

Guards: Sen’jin
Jukebox: Zul’Gurub Voodoo, the Zandalari
Ideal Garrison Staff: Fawne, Kwahu, Hara’len, Kaama (Tauren Hunters); Pleasure Bot 8000, Ziri’ak (Mechanicals); Rala, Mulverick, Rokash, Penny, Velonara, Nat, Harrison (zone/quest Hunters — Harrison may technically be a Rogue, but he carries a gun, so that makes him an honorary Hunter); Karga, Rumelda, Kew, Vala, Mychele, Mokuja, Abigail, Samantha, Coggeye (inn recruit female Hunters); Aesin (inn recruit male Blood Elf Hunter)

Guards: Huojin Pandaren/Shado-Pan
Jukebox: Way of the Monk, Song of Liu Lang
Ideal Garrison Staff: Yiska, Toega (Tauren Monks); Fen Tao, Bruto (zone/quest Monks); Lin, Kang, Ken-Ken, Ashyo, Xiao (inn recruit Pandaria Monk Buddies!); Su-Lai, Xue, Haomi, Nuan, Fo Sho, Xen, Len Shu (inn recruit Pandaren Monks); Tizare, Lara, Lucy, Yu’un, Favra (inn recruit female Monks); Velandros (inn recruit male Blood Elf Monk)

Guards: Ebon Blade
Jukebox: Mountains, Ghost
Ideal Garrison Staff: Kilga, Tipa, Kaasa, Tigar (Tauren Death Knights); Xuk, Ahm (Ghosts); Kaz, Bruto, Xuk, Cacklebone (Laughing Skull Orcs); Gibb, Abu’gar (zone/quest Death Knights); Vivianne, Ulna, Barov, Velonara (zone/quest Forsaken); Gie, Sylvie, Arachni, Morticia, Rike, Torwa, Nerwalla, Heyzzle (inn recruit female Death Knights)

Jukebox: Magic
Ideal Garrison Staff: Ishaal, Kurekk, Rukaryx, Vayx (Arakkoa); Leorajh, Goldmane, Pallas (Saberon); Phylarch (Botani); Choluna (zone/quest Druid); Matoclaw, Genah, Kuma, Haumeja, Cadi, Tama, Goahn, Magrum, Tapa, Tholo, Atohi, Muaha, Humak, Iye (Tauren Druids); Jakala (inn recruit female Troll Druid)

Guards: Thunder Bluff
Jukebox: Mountains of Thunder
Ideal Garrison Staff: Kanuama, Karn, Gaho, Maska (Tauren Warriors); Olin, Na’shra, Karg, Morketh, Lantresor, Tormmok, Blook, Ahm (zone/quest Warriors); Bim’ini, Xuan, Motina, Gazra, Olivia, Allison, Eula, Rizza, Annix, Myra (inn recruit female Warriors)

Guards: Silvermoon/Sunreavers
Jukebox: Silvermoon, Lament of the Highborne
Ideal Garrison Staff: Dawn, Chillbreeze, Vella, Taela, Marius (Blood Elf Mages); Krelas, Vivianne, Vargoth (zone/quest Mages); Kaz (because she’s a pyro); Tuulani (because Kaelinda likes the Draenei); Candice, Noel, Kral’girz, Shoka, Jukka, Awarri, Pele’zol, Kaz’hiki, Nuku’te (inn recruit female Mages); Tuan (inn recruit male Pandaren Mage)

Guards: Silvermoon/Sunreavers
Jukebox: Argent Tournament
Ideal Garrison Staff: Layla, Ariia, Hannya, Faala, Naana, Skah, Sahale, Lusio, Tawa, Kaiel (Tauren Paladins); Tuulani (because of Liadrin at Auchindoun); Seleriel, Auriel, Besandran, Opheron, Artemisia, Salanar, Merhean, Zance, Tas’ril, Argonis, Lan’Veros (Blood Elf Paladins); Soulare (Human Paladin)

Jukebox: Faerie Dragon
Ideal Garrison Staff: Enola, Yaalo, Ahote (Tauren Priests); Ulna, Tuulani (zone/quest Priests); Priscilla, Phaedra, Arienne, Hayli, Pikake, Takmoa, Marara, Vyse, Handel, Harley, Ruthia, Kenzi (inn recruit female Priests); Zuo (inn recruit male Pandaren Priest)

Jukebox: Black Temple
Ideal Garrison Staff: Cheri, Soulblaze, Vera V, Nadia, Kerraleon (Blood Elf Warlocks); Aeda (zone/quest Warlock); Krelas, Vivianne, Kaz (because they’re pyros); Veka’kai, Natalie, Simone, Shade, Nethraza, Arga, Deena (inn recruit female Warlocks)

Jukebox: Totems of the Grizzlemaw, Rescue the Warchief (Lost Isles)
Ideal Garrison Staff: Ariiya, Alia, Vivalia, Vaal’kelthos (Blood Elf Rogues); Ka’la, Dagg, Harrison, Kimzee (zone/quest Rogues); Kimzee, Penny, Felblast, Goodwell (zone/quest Goblins); Velonara (because poisons are a Rogue thing); Kablouie, Pinkee, Qwilla, Grelwaz, Zaelatha, Lai, Ella, Vera H (inn recruit female Rogues)

Jukebox: Shalandis Isle, Cold Mountain
Ideal Garrison Staff: Serena, Vargoth, Millhouse (zone/quest Mages); Fiona, Rulkan (because they’re awesome); Chel, Erdanii, Kaalya, Tuulani, Onaala, Illona, Miall (zone/quest female Draenei); Rebecca, Becky, Araspeth, Tessa, Bloodrose, Scrapsy, Mysandra, Danaeris, Reina, Caerania, Seona, Alessia, Haana (inn recruit female Mages)

You would think that with this goal of making each character’s Garrison into a sort of proto-Order Hall for her Class in mind, I’d have made a list of which Followers each character specifically needed to recruit soon after the beginning of Warlords, but no, I didn’t do it until a couple of weeks before Patch 7.0. Thus, Kamalia was so focused on trying to recruit all the Tauren Followers that she often turned down Followers that she should have hired (ie Shamans that weren’t Tauren). Even if every character gets a Follower whom she actually wants to hire every week from now on, it will take me about four more months of visiting my Garrisons at least once a week just to recruit new Followers at the Inn to completely perfect my characters’ Garrison staffing.

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It was short and sweet. I was glad to see that it didn’t have a gear reward, because that meant I only had to run through it three times: with my Loremaster (Kamalia), my Alliance Main (Kaylynda), and my Main Horde Mage (Kaelinda).

I’ve seen some murmuring in the community that it was underwhelming. I think it was definitely necessary, though.

As players, we’ve known ever since the original Legion announcement that one of our goals in questing through the Broken Isles will be recovering the Pillars of Creation. But our characters didn’t know that yet, and this was a nice way to reveal that information to them.

Jaina’s replacement on the Council of Six is the obvious, natural choice.

When Kaylynda asked Kalec if he knew where Jaina had gone, he just shrugged and said, “Jaina is her own woman, and she hasn’t seen fit to contact me.”

After this questchain (both parts) and this encounter — which shows that to Khadgar, de Naal isn’t just a river in Uldum —

Kaylynda will be quite excited to discover that she gets to learn more about Alodi when she starts pursuing the Frost Mage Artifact! (She’s still going to get the Arcane Artifact, Aegwynn’s staff, first, though.)

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So, that Demon Hunter starting experience was really quite enjoyable.
There are a few places where you are offered a choice between two options, and although the only one that really seems to matter is whether to spec Havoc or Vengeance, I think it might be interesting to roll another Demon Hunter someday and take the other choices at all of those decision points, just to see how the follow-up dialogue is different.

Upon returning to the normal world, Kiralaira had a few things she wanted to do right away.

First, she needed to go punch Kael’thas in the face —


— for being a traitor and selling out to the Burning Legion.

Then she went to ask Illidan if, um, given that she’s, um, apparently the “alpha” Illidari, she could, um, “borrow” the Warglaives of Azzinoth for, um, “safekeeping” while he is, um, “indisposed”?

(This would feel significantly less awkward if she had chosen [this guy] instead of [that guy] at a certain decision point in the starting experience.)

Illidan replied, no, not right now, ask me again next week.

Next, she went to Tanaan to take a selfie or two with Yrel.

I do hope it wasn’t one of your relatives who gave me these horns, dearie

After not having gone through the Tanaan Invasion experience for so long, it didn’t seem all that tiresome or tedious. I found myself just zipping right along, all the way through to the end, and even having fun doing it. Imagine that!

Then she went to Pandaria.

Wait, what?

I thought I was done with the Shado-Pan, I really did. After I got the Shado-Pan Helmet with my Human Mage, I remembered that I’d never gotten one with my Draenei Mage, either. So I took Kaprikka out to Townlong Steppes, but after a day or two… nope, didn’t want to do that, after all. She went back to camping Onyxia, and I added “don’t want to do any given rep grind with any given Class more than once” to my list of reasons for Retiring my secondary Tauren alts.

(Because a) I don’t like the Felstalker and b) the Shado-Pan rep mounts don’t require the rep to use, the red Shado-Pan Riding Tiger is already her mount of choice.)

But Kiralaira insisted that because she is a new and different Class, she needs a Shado-Pan Helmet (and Transmogrification kit) — and, furthermore, she wants to make a Shado-Pan Helmet kit that also uses the Shado-Pan Tabard — something I haven’t yet managed to do.
And because she is level 100 and Fel Rush and Eye Beam are fun and powerful, she might even actually do the Sra’Vess (mantid) Shado-Pan quests, which I ignored on all my other characters…

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I finally got the last of my characters through the Broken Shore event and their first Demon Invasion. Then I did a few more Demon Invasions with various characters until I’d completed the Transmogrification sets for each armor type. In the process, my Monk got that sweet looking polearm — the only one of the Invasions weapons that I was really truly interested in collecting for its appearance. I’m almost done with Invasions. My DK is still farming for the 2H axe and collecting Nethershards to get upgrade tokens for it so that she can use it for her off-spec during Legion*.

I also have yet to play through the Demon Hunter starting experience. I’d like to do that before August 30, though — in the lull between the big crowds from the early access and the big crowds from the actual launch. I think I’m just going to buy the Invasions warglaive for my Demon Hunter with some of Kamalia’s Nethershards so that I don’t have to worry about farming for the drop.

Anyhow, with Invasions no longer a top priority for my playtime, it was time to visit Dalaran in its temporary location over Karazhan. I did it with Kamalia. Then I did it with my Alliance Mage. (more…)

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/bowled over

I did the Alliance version first. I hoped that the Horde version would make some more sense of some of Sylvanas’ actions. And yes, yes it very much did.

My absolute favorite thing about the whole experience, though, was what I observed when I took a thorough tour of the docks area before turning in the first quest. I don’t think it’s too terribly spoilery to write about this, as it’s not related to the big lore reveals and many folks may have missed it in their rush to get to and through the scenario itself.

I’ll put it behind a cut, though, just in case. (more…)

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I Have Returned

Do not mistake me for the woman who left, all those years ago.

There are some experiences that a person cannot endure and remain unchanged.

Becoming a Demon Hunter is one of those experiences.

The woman whom I was knowingly and willingly sacrificed herself to become me.

I honor her memory and her memories, but I am not that woman anymore.

Do not expect me to respond to you as she would have done, and do not get in my way.

Of course I had to create my Demon Hunter today. I quite like that a Demon Hunter can look almost completely normal, if they wish — no tattoos, no horns, not even a blindfold — on a Blood Elf, those glowing fel green eye sockets aren’t really that much different from usual. I had been thinking about choosing the smallest, stub horns for my Demon Hunter, but then when I saw the Yrel horns, well, I had to have those instead. The demon whose heart Kiralaira consumed was an Eredar sorceress.

I haven’t actually zoned in with her yet, though. I don’t want to deal with the crowds, the lag, the bugs, the bottlenecks. I want to be able to savor and document the starting zone experience without too many other people cluttering up my screenshots.

Instead, I’ll do my usual Tuesday routine of recruiting new Followers from the Inn (gotta catch ’em all!) and farming old raids for Mog stuffs. Then I’ll check out a Demon Invasion or two. I’ll take Kiralaira through the Demon Hunter starting zone later this week, or maybe next week, after the initial rush has tapered off (and I’ve completed more of my pre-semester prep work >.<)

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I haven’t listened to the Legion lead-in audiodrama that came out this week, but something in one of the BW posts about it made me wonder just what happened to Cordana Felsong, and why she’s going to be a dungeon boss in Legion. So I hopped over to Wowpedia to read up on her. Because Cordana is so closely associated with Khadgar, the article also provided a nice synopsis of the Legendary Ring questline.

Reading about what “the Commander” did made me feel even more like my characters are not really qualified to be the heads of their class Orders in Legion.

I only progressed in the Ring questline far enough to discover the fate of Kairoz in the Time-Lost Glade. Most of the things that “the Commander” is supposed to have done, I didn’t do.

I didn’t LFR during Warlords, not even running through them once in “tourist mode”. I made a choice not to bother with it at the beginning of the expansion, and I stuck with that decision. The only time I set foot in LFR this whole expansion was to get the Shipyard equipment blueprint for the Gyro-whatsit that drops from the Fel Reaver. On a Real Life basis, I don’t regret not raiding.

Sitting in my Garrison running Follower missions and doing profession CDs and farming old raids for Mog gear, though, I wasn’t “the Commander”, the great Hero of three worlds (counting Outland and Draenor separately)… I was more like the 2nd Lieutenant in charge of Logistics, or something.

And so I feel like my characters don’t quite deserve the accolades with which they will be greeted and treated as they undertake the Artifact questlines in Legion.

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